My takeaway: In this sequel to How to Bang a Billionaire, Alexis Hall delivers emotion, humor, a compelling chemistry, and some heartbreak. It’s better than the first, and it left me demanding more.
My experience: How to Blow It with a Billionaire was a sort of wavy ride for me. Not a rocky one, because there wasn’t a moment when I was truly displeased with it, but it wasn’t a steady love fest.
This novel started off sweet, with lots of charm and chemistry, plus one very sexy scene on an airplane. I had a good feeling about it, but I was cautious and somewhat skeptical because of my experience with the first book. Book one started with a lot of potential and the same sparkling, giddy vibes, but then it got weird and cold as the characters disconnected. Fortunately, that didn’t happen again. Yay!
HtBIwaB featured the warmth and magnetic connection that I’ve come to expect from Alexis Hall couples. I loved reading the scenes with Caspian and Arden, as they were filled with sparks, angst, tension, and sweetness. What I didn’t enjoy, or more accurately, what annoyed me at first was the fact that a solid chunk of the book featured Arden just hanging out with Caspian’s sister, Ellery. She was a side character introduced in the first book, but I didn’t expect to see so much of her in this one. There was about 15% of the book where it felt like there was more development for that relationship than Arden and Caspian’s, and it wasn’t until I adjusted my perspective that I really became absorbed in the narrative.
I accepted that this is Arden’s story and about his character growth (duh, Cristal, look at the series name) and stopped expecting this to be solely about his relationship with Caspian. This made the second half of the book a much more enjoyable experience and a more dynamic read. Not to say that there wasn’t a heavy focus on Arden and Caspian, because there so was. They became closer, and Caspian peeled back a few layers, and by the end of the novel I was so invested in their relationship that I didn’t want to finish it, because this is the second book in a trilogy, so you know full well how it ended. Sigh, my heart.
My recommendation: In many ways this billionaire romance is similar to others in the market, and the push and pull between the protagonists will be familiar for romance fanatics. What makes it special is the writing and the characters who are drawn with layers and vibrancy. If you’re looking for a coming-of-age type male/male romance that doesn’t just fetishize gay sexuality, is written by a talented hand, and is told from a charming point of view, then give this series a try.
Book InfoHow to Blow It with a Billionaire by Alexis Hall
Series: Arden St. Ives #2
Genres: Romance, Erotica
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Be careful what you wish for . . .
Once upon a time there was a totally ordinary boy who fell for a cold, beautiful prince. Only it's not a fairy tale, it's my life. The prince is a billionaire called Caspian Hart. And we're trying super hard to live happily ever after.
He's everything I want, need, and can't resist: a man who looks like a god and bangs like the devil. Except he's still got his rules and he's still got his secrets . . .
But if there's one thing Caspian's taught me it's that you should never settle for less than you're worth. And I'm worth his trust. I have to show him that I see him. That I'm not afraid of his passion, or his power, or his past. And that I won't settle for less than everything.